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Swine Flu & Breastfeeding

(10 Posts)
bobthebuddha Fri 17-Jul-09 13:05:45

Saw a chap on the news this morning (caught the end of the piece so don't know who he was) stating that those born in the early part of the 20th century will have acquired some level of immunity to H1N1, as it was in circulation for some decades after the 1918 pandemic.

Now, breastfeeding is known to pass on immunity & is indeed being advised as ever more important whilst swine flu is doing the rounds.

So the logical assumption here is that those of us who were breastfed by mothers born earlier last century will have passed on some H1N1 immunity and if we breastfed our children in turn we will have done the same for them.

Can't find anything further on this out there on the 'net. Any scientific/medical types who can give their take on this?

llareggub Fri 17-Jul-09 13:14:04

Sounds v interesting. I hope it's true.

belgo Fri 17-Jul-09 13:18:11

How long does immunity from bfing last? Breastfeeding rates were very low at the end of last century so I don't think it will apply to many people.

PartOfTheHumphreysGroup Fri 17-Jul-09 13:25:30

my mum is not really old enough for that to apply, but I did hear that children are more affected by this as older people in general have gained immunity over the year by being exposed to similar bugs, so presumably babies who have been breastfed would receive some of that. I guess this is a similar thing..

I'm definitely not planning to stop until it's blown over somewhat!

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 17-Jul-09 13:28:31

Good to see something positive in the media about breastfeeding

llareggub Fri 17-Jul-09 13:30:07

I've heard that babies are less affected by swine flu than they are from normal seasonal flu. My grandmother was born in 1910. She breastfed my mother who was born in 1948, who breastfed me for 6 weeks in 1975. I am breastfeeding right now with no plans to stop, and I bf DS1 for over 2 years.

I'd like to believe it.

ILikeToMoveItMoveIt Fri 17-Jul-09 13:33:23

I was thinking about this the other day. DS is 10mo and I intend to carry on bf him anway, but it just reinforces that I want to carry on bf'ing him over this coming Winter and cold/flu season.

It's just a bit of a bummer that I wasn't bf grin

Stretch Fri 17-Jul-09 15:45:31

It's so much easier though to bf a poorly baby/child, then try to get fluids down any other way. So that alone is enough for me!

Sadly though, ds has self-weaned (14 months) as I am pregnant and I suspect that he doesn't really want the colostrum? Does that sound about right?

I am wondering whether to offer him the breast if he does come down with SF??

bubbleymummy Fri 17-Jul-09 19:05:18

Hi Stretch - my DS1 nearly self weaned during my pregnancy but I think it was more to do with the huge reduction in my milk supply than its change of taste He cut right down to just a short bed time feed but once his little brother came along he got very intrested again and asks for it more often! No harm in offeringh I always think and if he doesn't want it directly from you, you could always put it in a cup for him...

Stretch Fri 17-Jul-09 20:55:19

Thanks bubbley! Good point about putting it in a cup.

Although I stopped feeding 2 weeks ago, I still seem to be able to get quite a bit out. And I bet when this baby comes along he will regain interest too!!

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